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Industry Report: All-Time High Gun Sales Recorded in November

by G&A Online Editors   |  December 11th, 2012 18
Gun sales

Eric Sandberg, owner of Centennial Arms, Inc., in Naples, Fla., helps a customer pick out a pistol for personal defense Nov. 15. (Photo by Dania Maxwell/Naples (Fla.) Daily News)

The firearms industry had an awful lot to be thankful for this past November.

According to a PowerPoint presentation released by Smith & Wesson, gun sales hit an all-time high in November with the most background checks in recorded history, according to data from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

The Smith & Wesson presentation also cites Black Friday as the largest gun sales day in recorded history.

Check out the video from WMBF-TV.

WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

The FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) reported 2,006,919 background checks in November, breaking the previous record of 1,862,327 set in December 2011. As of Nov. 30, the FBI had conducted 16,808,538 background checks—also an all-time high.

According the FBI, the number of annual background checks has increased since 2002, when a total of 8,454,322 background checks were recorded.

The NICS was launched by the FBI on Nov. 30, 1998, to determine whether prospective firearms customers are “eligible to buy firearms or explosives.” Cashiers are required by law to call in a check to the FBI or “other designated agencies” to determine whether the customer has a criminal record or is otherwise prohibited from purchasing or possessing a firearm. According to the FBI, more than 100 million checks have been made in the last decade, and over 700,000 denials have been issued.

These record sales should come as no surprise. Companies across the industry have recorded unprecedented growth in recent years, including Sturm, Ruger & Co., Smith & Wesson and Hornady, to name a few. Though Ruger’s stock slipped 2 percent Tuesday, the company was ranked No. 4 on Forbes’ Best Small Companies list. Meanwhile, Smith & Wesson reported a 48-percent increase in sales and a backlog of orders valued at approximately $392 million for the first fiscal quarter of 2012. In the meantime, ammunition manufacturer Hornady’s continued growth earned the family-owned business the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers Ammunition Manufacturer of the Year award for the third year in a row.

And with plenty of time left in the calendar year, it’s safe to say numbers will continue to climb.

  • Jeff M.

    Man this sure feels true. Anyone try ordering from Bud's lately?

  • Mack Missiletoe

    Rented a Smith and Wesson AR15 today with my friend. Shooting an AR-15 with the .223 cartridge was a great experience. Somewhat similar to what our troops depend on too :)

    Amazing how many background checks there were in November! Wow… if only news media reported how many responsible USA citizens have owned guns for all these years…

    My friend's cheap scope broke recently. A nice man at the gun shop answered all of our questions as we browsed the scopes. He was understanding and made some great points about my friend's situation. I know that working with people all day is tough and was sure to thank him. I should have gotten his name! It is men and women like him that we need in our gun shops and our vehicle workshops.

  • Tracy Thorleifson

    Well, let's face it, for gun owners, the November election results were a bit of unpleasantness on a par with the zombie apocalypse. Of course shooters are stocking up. I have no idea what a lame duck, anti-gun president with zero concerns about reelection has up his sleeve for us gun owners, but I'll hazard a guess it ain't going to be pretty and I'm not going to like it one little bit. If I actually needed yet another AR, I'd buy one right now. Maybe I can at least talk Santa into leaving a Surefire 60-rouder in my stocking… ;-)

    • Kenny – Tampa

      The surefire 60 performs like a dream. ENJOY

  • joel p

    Thank You comrade obama!!

  • Mark Smen

    The Gubberment iz a comin'! Irrational/impulsive folk will do anything, it's like trying to buy the last Twinkie I guess. Makes you wonder should such irrational/impulsive people actually own guns in the first place.

    • dale

      Don't worry Mark,the world ends in a little over a week.You won't be here to see the last Twinkie .It's true the media say so,they quote the Mayans….you know Mark …the civilization that ceased to exist before all those nasty europeans arrived here. By does the "S" stand for smarmy?

  • Larry Larson

    When they come for your guns, be sure you give them your bullets first.

  • Kenny – Tampa

    Society has molded us as citizens into what we are now. "It is better to have a gun and not need it than to need a gun and not have it".

    • BJC

      I call that the condom rule and it applies to almost everything. You get a thumbs up.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dan.jordet.9 Dan Jordet

    Do your best to obtain a used for sale by owner not recorded handgun or long barell…….get a simple reloader like the Lee Loader which is very simple…..then of course the recommended powder and bullets. You do not need anything fancy, just functional.

    • David

      Also fun, is buying an 80% lower (no FFL required, no serial number, no recorded sale…) and building your own custom rifle. A real sense of pride putting your own personal touches to each component.

  • BJC

    The anti gunners are accomplishing one of their objectives by driving the price of guns and ammunition sky high.

    • NOYFB

      The anti gunners aren't doing that, we are. Supply and demand. I honestly don't know what the majority of this country saw in Obama to reelect him. While Romney wouldn't be my first choice, him being a successful business man would have a better chance to get the US back on track than Obama who spends spends spends. But I digress…the price of ammo and guns, mostly ammo, has been going up because we gun owners fear some form of legislation is coming in the near future that would limit or eliminate our right to buy such products.

  • Alan Butterworth

    With the School shooting in Conn. this morning the pressure is increased to ban guns. How can You make frightened Liberals understand that removing guns would only lead to more carnage because the mentally imbalanced would have to use whatever they can build or steal to commit Murder leading to pipe bombs in Our Schools or poisons in Our Food/Medicine/water etc. All We can be sure of is that the Killers will keep on Killing. We as a People should DEMAND the Right to STOP Them and to protect Our Loved Ones by any means necessary and taking Our weapons is the absolute WORST way to proceed.

    • http://twitter.com/RPScott1 @RPScott1

      Liberals never undestood defense or defense in depth. The plutonic nanny State takes care of everything, or at least the one's it wants to.

  • Evan M

    What’s really important to remember in the wake of all the gun craze is how
    important it is to make sure that everyone is being safe with their
    firearms. I’ve actually done some
    research on the topic and put together a good list of some of the best gun safe reviews about safes to
    keep firearms secure.

    No matter how you look at it, the takeoff in gun sales is great for the economy
    and gun owners for the long term future.

  • Guest

    What’s really important to remember in the wake of all the gun craze is how

    important it is to make sure that everyone is being safe with their

    firearms. I’ve actually done some

    research on the topic and put together a good list of some of the best gun safe reviews
    about safes to

    keep firearms secure.

    No matter how you look at it, the takeoff in gun sales is great for the economy

    and gun owners for the long term future.

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